Nasim Almuntaser

Brooklyn College history student grew up working in his family's bodega in Brighton Beach

This oral history was recorded in 2021 when Nasim Almantaser was 21-year-old Brooklyn College student. Nasim grew up working in his Yemeni American family's bodega in Brighton Beach and began helping out in the store as a young boy to be with his father. He recalls his father, who immigrated to the U.S. in the 1990s, working 12-hour shifts to support their family.

Nasim describes the special relationship and sense of community that a bodega owner has with the people who patronize his store and shares his experiences during the pandemic. His career goal as a history and education major is to become a history teacher. He talks about how history classes at Brooklyn College engaged and inspired him, and were very different from the history he was taught in public school. "I'm the first American citizen in my family, which I take with a great sense of pride, but a huge sense of responsibility as well," says Nasim.